Are you interested in using social media networks for your business?
Do you know which social media networks will be most effective in your specific marketing campaigns?
If, like many business owners, you are unsure about how social media can be used to meet your business goals, then it's worth having a quick read about the main features of each social networking platform. With the functionality available, and the massive populations of these social media sites, you'll no doubt find it an attractive proposition to your business to be visible in such popular spaces.
Here's a quick overview of the 5 main social media networks available.
LinkedIn is one of the few social media networks that is designed solely for professional networking purposes. Professionals and businesses use LinkedIn to create connections with prospects and their customers, which opens up a channel of communication - both public (groups, status updates) and private (inbox messages).
LinkedIn allows businesses to connect with individuals by joining groups where they could meet potential customers. Businesses that are centred on IT would be likely to join groups related to their business, so that they would attract the right kind of customers that share the same interests as they do.
Job vacancies are listed on LinkedIn by businesses that have a LinkedIn page. Posting a job on LinkedIn can generate a lot of interest to the vacancy through the targeted search parameters. Businesses can also pay extra money to ensure that their vacancy is on the top of the page for additional exposure.
Facebook is the most used social media networks in the world, there are more than 1.5 billion people who have a Facebook account, and over 750 million people who are frequent users of the social network.
Users can create Facebook pages for businesses. Separate to personal profiles (which require friend requests to be accepted before communication can commence), anyone can see, visit and contribute to Facebook pages, which provides a valuable platform for boosting brand awareness and exposure.
Businesses with a large community on their Facebook page have good opportunities to generate traffic to their website, showcase good levels of customer service, and up-sell business products and services.
There are also advertising opportunities available on Facebook to promote products or services directly to your ideal audiences. Facebook Ads can be highly targeted, depending on a wide range of information that is collected in Facebook account. This means the clicks you receive can be relevant to your business and qualified to make purchases.
Twitter is one of the most dynamic of the social media networks. Users send 'Tweets' - a message with 140 character limit - which can be seen by any other user on the platform.
It is estimated that over 8000 users send out a tweet every second. Anyone on Twitter can send a tweet about anything, which means businesses have to be careful about the content they share and the conversations they engage in.
If someone with a lot of Twitter followers shared an update about a positive experience with your business, then chances are it will be seen by a percentage of their audience and word of mouth can spread digitally.
YouTube is the most popular of the social media networks based on video. Individuals use YouTube for a variety of reasons, whether for entertainment or for educational services.
The average human spends fifteen to twenty-five minutes a day on YouTube searching for videos, with the majority of users are between eighteen and twenty-four years of age.
Advertisements have been introduced on YouTube videos in different types of formats. The most used type of advert are video adverts that play whilst the video is loading. Some of the video adverts are skippable after five seconds, and some are not.
Business can also purchase display ads on the side, or overlay ads that appear on the lower portion of the video. YouTube displays relevant ads based on the user's cookies by keeping a track of all the websites a user visits, so adverts match users browsing history and interests.
Google+ is another of the most popular social media networks in the world. This platform allows users to connect openly with each other by 'circling' users - another term for segmenting contacts into groups. Google+ allows users to post different types of multimedia content on their Google+ page, as well as share directly with others or in communities.
A feature of Google+ is local areas. It automatically shows a user the places that are near their current geographical location. Google+ Local allows businesses to see any reviews that were posted on their Google+ page and see how many stars that their customers rated them.
This can help businesses gain exposure and reputation - good reviews and ratings are typically a big factor in deciding whether or not to buy a product or service from a business. Recommendations can be a helpful tool because individuals tend to trust the opinions of others who have had first-hand experience with the business.
Is your business visible in social media? Which networks are you active on?
Your business should be taking full advantage of the opportunities that social media networks bring. If you're not, then rest assured your competitors are!
Engage, interact and post frequently across a variety of social media networks in order to increase your lead generation and brand awareness opportunities. It might take a lot of time and hard work to learn how to implement social media marketing, but everything you do online will ultimately affect how your business does offline.
Which social media platform is most effective for your business?
If you’ve just started up your business you definitely need marketing. This article will give you 21 marketing tips for small businesses that you should absolutely be employing.
1.Publish Great Content
You need to think of your content as an advertisement. You won’t publish a dull looking design on a billboard advertisement. So don’t do the same for your content. I’m not saying that the content has to have fancy designs or anything, rather it needs to be valuable content that your audience will love to read and share.
Tutorials that teach your audience how to do something is excellent. If its in video form then that is even better. It’s never been more easy to create videos. Pull out your smartphone and upload it to YouTube. Cheap and effective.
3.Use PPC vouchers (adwords etc)
Companies like Google and Bing are always giving out vouchers for you to try out their advertising platform. This will allow you to test your PPC (Pay Per Click) Campaign without using much of your own money. Take the plunge and try it out!
4.Get On Social Media
Post fun and interesting stuff that your market will love so much that they will tell others about it. If your content is shared enough times it can create a great buzz around your brand.
Using infographics can be a fun way to educate your audience. It’s like a digital poster that is more attractive to look at rather than some dull text. Hire a designer to create one for you and slap your company logo on it. Every time its shared by someone your brand will also be shared.
6.Develop a Customer Referral Program
This is a great way for you to get leads from your current customers. Tell them to tell their friends about your products and give them both a small reward. For example, 10% off for you and your friend.
This is another great way to create a buzz around your brand and more importantly drive sales. The prize doesn’t need to be expensive but just something that people would want. Also don’t go too cheap!
This is actually a must no matter what business your in. Your email list is actually one of your biggest assets. With it you can update your customers with updates and new offers.
9.Always A/B test
No matter what form of advertising you are employing, you need to a/b test or split test. For example if you have a landing page, you should create an alternative one so that you can see which one performs better. One will always do better than the other. Once you see which one is doing better delete the other one and replace it with a new one.
This is related to email marketing because you will be using email to send out your newsletter. Your newsletter is a short update you send out to your list at least once a week. In it you should have the latest news in your industry.
This is something you have most probably done but it still needs to be said. Just make sure you post ads on places like Gumtree about your services. Add loads of pictures and describe it well!
12.Get blogging and Comment on others’ blogs
Blogging is a great way to provide great content to your audience whilst getting organic search traffic from the search engines. Google ranks websites high in their search engine if the content is natural and engaging. You must have the right keywords in there if you want to be ranked highly. However, don’t pick keywords that are too competitive. Google’s keyword tool is an invaluable too to find out what kind of search volume a keyword is getting. You should also comment on related blogs because this will get you noticed. Post meaningful comments but don't self promote!
13.Upsell Straight Away
The best time to sell to someone is the just after they have bought something from you. These customers are ready to buy; they already have their credit card in their hand so grab the opportunity while you can. If you still don’t get the gist I will give you a classic example. McDonalds- “do you want fries with that”. Straight after you’ve ordered something they will try and sell more to you. So don’t underestimate the Power of upselling!
Joining in on forum discussions is a great way to pose your authority in your industry. When people see you as an authority they are more likely to do business with you.
15.Create A Survey
If you already have a customer database you can survey them to find out what they want or aren’t happy with. With this new found information you can tweek your products and services to suit your customers.
16.Employ scarcity offers
Having deadlines on offers is a great way to get people to buy your product or service. Psychologically, having a deadline makes people want to snap up your deals before its gone!
17.Create a Fear of not Having your Product
This ties in with the scarcity method. If people think that your product or service will no longer be available it will create a sense of urgency when deciding to purchase.
18.Say Thank You
When you’re leaving a supermarket or retail store what do you see as you are exiting. “Thank You for shopping with us”. Just saying thank you to your customers is a great way to make them feel appreciated. Like their business means something to you. More importantly this will make them want to shop with in the future.
19.Exceed in Value
When your providing a service or selling a product always try and over deliver. Your customers will love you for it. And when your customers love you they wont think twice about doing business with you in the future even if you are slightly more expensive that your competitors.
20.Be an Industry Expert
If you position yourself/business as an expert people will see you as an authority. When they see you as an authority you won’t have to do much to make them buy your products and services.
21.Your Best Customers Are Your Existing Ones
Considering you have delivered good service, these customers already know and trust you, so selling to them won’t be too hard. Therefore, a good chunk of your marketing efforts should be focused on these customers.
22.Always State Up-to-date With Your Competitors
No one starts a business without analysing the competition. So you shouldn’t stop analysing them once you are up and running. Business is an ever changing entity so understanding what your competition are doing is of extreme importance.
That's all for now. I hope you enjoyed our 21 marketing tips for small businesses. If you employ these tips you are doing what a large percentage of businesses aren’t doing. As simple as they seem, people are just not implementing them into their marketing plan. Make sure you do!
If you found this article useful please do share with others that might be interested.
Written by Naazim Ahmed, Digital Marketing Executive
I stumbled upon the concept of margin while reading a post by Michael Hyatt, which led me to design my ideal week. Richard Swenson, M.D. (who wrote the book: Margin: Restoring Emotional, Physical, Financial, and Time Reserves to Overloaded Lives) describes margin like this:
Margin is the space between our load and our limits. It is the amount allowed beyond that which is needed. It is something held in reserve for contingencies or unanticipated situations. Margin is the gap between rest and exhaustion, the space between breathing freely and suffocating.
Last year I wrote about why booking too far in advance can be dangerous for your business, and this concept of margin so eloquently captures what I had recognized had been my problem: I was so booked up with clients that I wasn’t leaving any margin for error, growth, planning, or reflection. I wasn’t really growing my business in a sustainable way; I was just booking one client after the next. At the time this seemed like a good thing: doesn’t growing my business mean getting more clients?
What if instead of booking up to 100% capacity (which more often than not ends up being closer to 120%), we only booked up to an 80% capacity?
What if we left more room for growth (personal or professional) and stopped being one with “busy-ness”?
I spent nearly a year turning down every new project (and even getting rid of old ones) so that I could reduce my workload, build in more margin, and create what is now Digital Strategy School. It takes time to build margin into your schedule.Write a book. Create a program. Update your contracts and proposals (which has been on your to-do list for how long..?) Spend more time with your family. Go above and beyond for a client. Learn something new. Actually follow through on the things that have been nagging at you for a long time.
When you design your ideal week, you start to see that the time you think you have is often not in alignment with how much time you actually have.
After designing my ideal week, I had a much clearer idea of how to create a framework for my week that would empower me to feel more focused by theming days of the week, and even parts of the day. SO simple, I know. Some of you have been doing this for ages and you’re already a pro, and some of you who saw my schedule said “woah, that’s so rigid, I need more flexibility!”
If you’re not sure how much time you are actually spending on various tasks, use a tool like Rescue Time (their free version is excellent!) which runs in the background and tracks where your time is being spent. It can even send you weekly reports so you know exactly how much time you wasted on Facebook, or spent in your email inbox! You can assign different websites or programs/applications on a scale of very distracting to very productive, so you can see at a glance things like: which days of the week you’re most productive, which times of the day you’re most productive, and the sites on which you’re spending the most distracting time. Turns out I’m consistently “in the zone” around 3pm in the afternoon; so instead of trying to tackle highly creative work first thing in the morning (when my brain is barely functioning), I handle it in the afternoon, when I know I’m at my peak!
Creating more margin has been game-changing for my business.
What would be possible for yours?
Many years ago, I worked for my parents who own a video production company. Because it is a family business, you inevitably end up wearing many hats and being the czar of many different jobs. I mainly managed projects and worked as a video editor. On production, there were times that I was called on to work as an audio tech and was made to wear headphones on long production days. In those days, having a really good set of headphones that picked up every nuance of sound was essential to making sure the client got what they needed.
It’s safe to say that because of my unique professional experiences, I’ve tested out a lot of headphones.
Naturally, my first impression of these headphones is based off of the look of them. They have a classic over-the-ear style that is highlighted by a blue LED light that indicates the power for the noise canceling. The padding on the ear pieces seems adequate for extended usage periods.
They are wired headphones, but the 3.5mm stereo mini-plug cable is detachable. Something else I noticed right of the bat was the very nice carrying case that comes with them. It has a hard plastic exterior with a soft cloth interior that helps to protect the surface of the headphones from scratches. I never truly appreciated cases for headphones until I started carrying them from place-to-place. Now I can’t imagine not having a case.
Once I gave the headphones a thorough once-over exam, I tried them on. As I mentioned, they have a classic over-the-ear style and just looking at them, the padding on the ear pieces seem adequate and the peak of the headband seemed to be a bit lacking, but you don’t really know comfort unless you try on the product. So, I slipped the headphones on and found them to be exquisitely comfortable.
Now that I had the headphones on my head, I was finally ready to plug and play some music. I plugged the provided cable into the jack on the headphones and then the one on my iPhone 6. Then I called up Pandora. I tend to have a very eclectic music purview and have many stations set up for different moods. From John Williams to Fallout Boy, the sound quality of these headphones was remarkable. There is an amazing depth of sound and incredible highs and lows that make listening to music a truly breathtaking experience.
In order to test how voices sounded, and the overall art of sound mixing, I pulled up Netflix on my iPad Air 2 and watched a few minutes of a movie to hear all the nuances of the film. None of them were lost. In fact, I ended up hearing sounds that I hadn’t heard before. Echoes…birds chirping…wind blowing through trees…breathing of the characters…it was very impressive what the headphones ended up bringing out for me.
I would highly recommend these to any sound mixing specialist.
Lead generation describes the marketing process of stimulating and capturing interest in a product or service for the purpose of developing a sales pipeline.
Recently, the buying process has changed, and business owners need to find new ways to reach out to potential customers and increase sales.
Benefits Of Lead Generation;
Are you interested in Lead Generation? Feel free to contact us to see how we can help.
Thanks for reading guys!
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